Bryant moves from field to AD position at Newnan

by Chris Goltermann

alt


By CHRIS GOLTERMANN

cgoltermann@newnan.com


Jeff Bryant was looking the part of his new role at Newnan High School well on Friday, donning a shirt and tie — be it all part of a photo opportunity with one of his more well-known football players back in town.

The tougher thing, he admits, will be how he’ll handle being off the field this fall.

Bryant was recently named the school’s new athletic director, replacing Steve Allen, who transferred to East Coweta High, where his daughter is a student.

Stepping out of coaching positions, both as a longtime Cougars assistant on the football field, where he also held the title of co-defensive coordinator, as well as leading Newnan’s golf program after a banner 2014 season, was the trade off for moving into administration heading into the 2014-15 school year.

“It’s going to be different, especially not being out there in the fall for practice,” Bryant said. “The good thing is I get to stay around it.”

Bryant will also have to find his own replacement in Newnan’s varsity golf program. The Cougars are coming off a fourth-place finish in last year’s Georgia High School Association Class AAAAAA State Championship after winning their sixth consecutive region title. At one point of the state tournament, Newnan’s boys held the lead.

The Lady Cougars, meanwhile, won their first region championship this spring.

“It’ll be tough stepping away from that also, especially after this past year and where the program’s going,” said Bryant.

It didn’t take long, however, for Newnan head football coach Mike McDonald to find someone to fill an opening on his defensive staff while turning to a former Cougar linebacker and key member of the school’s back-to-back state semifinal appearances in 2008 and 2009.

Adam Strakose, who recently wrapped up his college career at West Georgia, will coach his former position in his first coaching job since graduation.

Strakose was a four-year contributor while playing in 10 games each season and emerging into an immediate starter with the Wolves. His 41 tackles as a senior ranked fifth among the defense for a former All-State, All-Region and All-County standout in high school at Newnan.

The Cougar program also added assistant Marvell McKelphin to the staff in the offseason to coach running backs.

McKelphin, who coached football and baseball at East Coweta under Danny Cronic, spent the last 15 years at Carrollton coaching under Rayvan Teague, Ross New and the late Ben Scott and was part of the Trojans’ state championship staff in 1998. He served as Carrollton’s defensive coordinator last year under Teague, who accepted an athletic director’s position at Westside High in Anderson, S.C., after retiring from coaching.

Newnan assistant Hap Hines, who has coached running backs, will coach tight ends this season in addition to becoming the program’s special teams coordinator following the retirement of Bob Sandlin.




More Sports

High School Baseball

Cougars fall at Northside

Newnan followed up a late victory over Chapel Hill with an early morning trip to Columbus, and the results Saturday saw a sluggish Cougars t ... Read More


High School Baseball

Johnson sharp as Cougars shake off rust in win

Newnan may have needed three innings to shake off the rust in Friday’s 6-2 road win over Chapel Hill following a six-day layoff. But j ... Read More


Vikings rout Dutchtown; Indians fall to Starr’s Mill

Northgate improved its record to 2-2 Friday with a 12-1 victory over Dutchtown on the road Friday in McDonough in a game called after six in ... Read More


High School Spring Sports

Northgate drops tennis openers to Starr’s Mill

After having matches rained out twice earlier this week, Northgate tennis teams finally got their season under way Thursday, losing to tough ... Read More


GISA state basketball

Hawks, Lions bow out in first round

Heritage School and Trinity Christian boys teams had respective 2014-15 basketball seasons come to an end in the opening round of the GISA C ... Read More

High School Soccer

EC gets back on field in split with Houston Co.

Mother Nature hasn’t been a best friend to East Coweta soccer teams so far this season. Despite starting the year nearly three weeks a ... Read More